Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has declared that the Sunshine State will be providing additional resources to aid Texas in addressing the challenges at the southern border. The Republican governor is mobilizing members of the Florida National Guard and the Florida State Guard to support the ongoing efforts. This move supplements the existing presence of officers from the Florida Highway Patrol, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
In his statement, Governor DeSantis emphasized the right of states to defend their sovereignty and expressed satisfaction in enhancing support for Texas as it strives to address border-related issues. The reinforcements from Florida will assist Texas in implementing additional barriers, including the installation of razor wire along the border. Governor DeSantis underscored the significance of securing the border, stating, “We don’t have a country if we don’t have a border.”
Approximately 1,000 members of the Florida National Guard will be deployed to Texas to contribute to Governor Greg Abbott’s Operation Lone Star. Major General John D. Haas, The Adjutant General of Florida, highlighted that supporting border security missions in Texas is not a new mission for Florida. The Florida National Guard has been actively involved in such missions for several years, including rotations to support Operation Lone Star in Texas.
Since 2021, Florida has been actively providing law enforcement and military assistance to Texas. The Florida National Guard has supported the Texas Military Department in various capacities, including static observation points, roving patrols, and engineer assistance with obstacle improvement. The Florida Highway Patrol has engaged with nearly 150,000 illegal aliens, conducted over 27,000 traffic stops, and made numerous arrests related to human smuggling and trafficking.
Governor DeSantis’s announcement coincides with a surge in illegal border crossings, reaching record numbers. Border Patrol encounters with illegal immigrants have totaled 302,034, surpassing the previous record of 269,735 from September. The move to send additional resources from Florida reflects a collaborative effort among states to address the escalating challenges at the southern border.